Richards-Donald, et al. v. TIAA Settlement

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is this lawsuit about?
  2. How do I know if I am part of the Class?
  3. When did the Court decide to approve the settlement?
  4. When will I receive my payment?
  5. I received a letter asking for my social security number, what should I do?
  6. How do I get more information?
  1. What is this lawsuit about?

    This lawsuit involves claims that that the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America and the TIAA Plan Investment Review Committee, in addition to individual defendants violated the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (“ERISA”) with respect to the selection and oversight of investment options in the Plans, the recordkeeping services provided to the Plans, and the fees associated with the Plans’ investments and services. Defendants deny the allegations and claims, and believe that they acted in the best interests of Plan participants.

    Plaintiffs claim that the Defendants breached their fiduciary duties under ERISA when they (a) caused the Plans to offer exclusively proprietary investment options managed by TIAA or an affiliate, resulting in “total plan costs” higher than those of comparable plans; (b) selected an affiliate as record keeper of the Plans, which charged fees higher than those for other plans; (c) failed to prudently evaluate Plan investment options; and (d) engaged in prohibited transactions under ERISA by receiving excessive fees. The lawsuit seeks damages based upon the alleged payment by participants of excessive fees for the investments included in the Plans and the recordkeeping services provided to the Plans.

    Defendants deny these allegations and instead argue (a) the investment options selected for the Plans were reasonable in that they included a variety of fixed and variable annuities that offer participants lifetime income opportunities; (b) the Plans offered an appropriate investment mix for participants, across different asset classes, risk profiles, fee structures, and outcome opportunities; (c) the fees charged by the investment options in the Plans, including the fixed and variable annuities, were reasonable and often lower than the fees charged by TIAA’s competitors for similar products; (d) the investment options in the Plans provided participants with strong performance; and, (e) TIAA met the Prohibited Transaction Exemption requirements to offer its own products as investment options for the Plans.

    In addition, Defendants argue that the Committee monitored the Plans’ investment options for the benefit of TIAA’s current and former employees, and that the recordkeeping fees charged to Plan participants were reasonable based on the nature and quality of the services provided by TIAA. Defendants also deny engaging in any prohibited transactions under ERISA.

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  2. How do I know if I am part of the Class?

    You are part of the Class if you are or have been a participant in either the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America Code Section 401(k) Plan or the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America Retirement Plan (the “Plans”), at some time during the period October 14, 2009 through April 30, 2017.

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  3. When did the Court decide to approve the settlement?

    The Court held a Fairness Hearing at 2:00 p.m. on October 20, 2017 at The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, located at the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Courthouse, 500 Pearl Street, New York, NY 10007-1312. At this hearing the court entered an order approving the settlement and allowing for distribution.

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  4. When will I receive my payment?

    The distribution to eligible class members in this matter was March 28, 2018.  Please allow at least 10-business days from the date of mailing for the check to arrive at your home. 

     

    Additional details regarding how the distribution was calculated can be found in the Notice on the Casse Documents page on this website.

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  5. I received a letter asking for my social security number, what should I do?

    we have determined that a payment that you are scheduled to received is reportable to the IRS.  Per IRS rules, we are required to collect and confirm this data before issuing any reportable payment to you.  Please review, complete and return the document you received to our office before the deadline on the letter.  If we do not receive a response to this letter before the deadline on the letter, we will issue your payment ad deduct backup withholdings of approximately 30% of the reportable distribution amount. 

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  6. How do I get more information?

    If you cannot find the information you need in the documents on the Case Documents page on this website, you may also call 1-844-454-4158 for more information or contact the Settlement Administrator at Richards-Donald v. TIAA Settlement Administrator, c/o KCC Class Action Services, P.O. Box 43434, Providence, RI 02940-3434. Please do not contact the Court to get additional information.

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